First standard for natural capital accounting

BSI, the UK National Standards Body, has published guidance for preparing natural capital accounts.

The new British Standard, named BS 8632: Natural Capital Accounting for Organisations - Specification, provides organisations with a deeper understanding of how their operations impact and depend on natural capital assets like geology, soil, water, air and living organisms, to underpin decision making.

The standard presents terminology, principles, steps, and outputs for creating a natural capital account to enable a transparent and repeatable practice. This includes the minimum requirements for defining the boundary of an account, material impacts and dependencies, and documenting the data and process used.

The standard has been developed by several organisations, including Capitals Coalition, Forestry Scotland, ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales), WRAP and IEMA.The standard is intended to be used by those who will be preparing the accounts. These could be environmental and sustainability professionals, accountants, environmental economists, and others working in collaboration.

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